The secret center to these 3D printed metal objects

Subject: General Tech | July 9, 2013 - 03:04 PM |
Tagged: 3d printing

3D printers are becoming familiar objects to even those not obsessed with technology, perhaps in part because of the kerfuffle over a certain blueprint allowing for the creation of a gun but also because they are interesting enough to capture anyone's imagination.  3D printing using metal is the obvious next step but as liquefying metal tends to create a rather dangerous environment developers have had to come up with new ideas.  At Hack a Day you can read about a project that has been printing metal globes and wires using a mixture of 75% gallium and 25% indium which is liquid at room temperature and quickly oxidizes a shell when exposed to air.  Perhaps not the most solid of construction materials but a very interesting step towards home 3D printing with metal.

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"While 3D printers of today are basically limited to plastics and resins, the holy grail of desktop fabrication is printing with metal. While we won’t be printing out steel objects on a desktop printer just yet, [Collin Ladd], [Ju-Hee So], [John Muth], and [Michael D. Dickey] from North Carolina State University are slowly working up to that by printing objects with tiny spheres of liquid metal."

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Source: Hack a Day

Colorful Raspberry Pi Cases and Set Up Kits Emerge

Subject: Cases and Cooling | March 21, 2012 - 10:41 PM |
Tagged: Raspberry Pi, case, 3d printing

The Raspberry Pi Foundation recently released their ARM powered Linux computer; however, the accompanying case will not be available until later this year. As a result, many enthusiasts are stepping up to the plate to design and fabricate cases of their own for the Raspberry Pi board. Previously, Marco Alici designed a white case with Raspberry Pi logo that could be produced using injection molding techniques (or 3D printers). Now, a new site called Mod My Pi has emerged to offer modders some alternative cases along with start up kits full of all the accessories people need to get their Raspberry Pi board up and running.

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Based in the UK, the Raspberry Pi enthusiasts are employing 3D printing technology to produce customizable cases based on ABS Plastic. Further, they are offering up a variety of color choices including blue, red, green, black, and white. Customers can choose two colors to mix an match, one for the top of the case and another for the bottom. The cases are form fitting and are designed to be dust and water resistant. They come as two parts that snap together to nestle the Raspberry Pi board safely. The bottom and side opposite the Ethernet jack provide plenty of vent holes to keep the board from overheating.

raspberry-pi-colours.jpg

If you have a design idea including a specific color or specific logo that you would like to incorporate into your Raspberry Pi case, Mod My Pi has stated that it is willing to work with customers to allow customization of cases to make them even more personalized.

The cases are currently up for pre-order, but are set to begin shipping via First Class Royal Mail for UK orders or through Royal Mail Airmail Small Packets for International orders. Shipping prices will be £1.99 for both UK and International orders, though International orders will naturally take a bit longer to arrive.

In addition to cases, Mod My Pi has put together a start up kit for those in the UK to complement the Raspberry Pi that includes everything a user will need to get the ARM computer up and running, except a display of course. The kit features a Raspberry Pi case, an 8 GB SD card with Debian Linux distribution, small wireless keyboard, wireless mouse, powered 7 port USB 2.0 hub, USB Wi-Fi dongle, USB card reader, 5 V 1000mA UK AC power adapter, micro USB to USB cable, RCA video and audio cables, HDMI cable, and Ethernet cable.

The setup kit is priced at £64.99 including VAT taxes and has a UK only shipping price of £4.99.

Even better, Mod My Pi is donating 5% of all sales of cases, and all profits from Mod My Pi stickers to the official Raspberry Pi Foundation (the charity behind the Raspberry Pi computer). Have you received your Raspberry Pi pre-orders yet? What will you be using for a case, will you be DIYing your own, or will you going with someone else's design?  On an unrelated note, there is so much Raspberry Pi in this news post, that I'm getting pretty hungry!

More Raspberry Pi reading:

Source: Mod My Pi

A Case For The Raspberry Pi Linux Computer

Subject: Cases and Cooling | March 7, 2012 - 04:58 PM |
Tagged: Raspberry Pi, cases, computing, 3d printing

Marco Alici is not only eagerly awaiting his Raspberry Pi computer, but he is so excited that he has already started mocking up a case for it using Blender software and basic measurements of the Raspberry Pi board.

raspberry-pi-case_05a.jpg

The case is a form fitting white plastic affair that has cutouts for each of the ports and an etched Raspberry Pi logo on the top. He states that because the Raspberry Pi has been designed to be as low cost as possible, the placement of connectors on the PCB makes for a less than ideal case. The RCA jack in particular juts out quite a bit from the casing, for example. Also the Raspberry Pi PCB does not have mounting holes to make attaching the case easy; Mr Alici had to come up with a snap-fit assembly to get around that issue.

The renderings of the case were made using Blender and Yafaray. He says that he is still waiting on his physical Rasberry Pi board to finalize the design and make it available for 3D printing at Shapeways. The case further is able to be constructed using injection molding, which he says makes for a cheap to produce case. More photos are available here.  Now, if only I had a 3D printer!

Source: Marco Alici